Week 16 Reflective Journal

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

This unit only consisted of a modern healthcare article and a course survey. My modern healthcare article was about a a new national program that provides HIV preventative medication. I learned about the high monthly cost of this medication and how much cheaper it is in other countries. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

We did not have any team activities this week. 

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

Reflecting on the course in the survey made me think about how to use the materials from this course in my practice at work. For me, I think there was a lot of helpful information about becoming a leader. However, right now, I feel like what is most memorable and applicable to my current job position was the module about change. The story about Hem and Haw and the cheese is something I think every single nurse should watch honestly. The health care environment is constantly changing. Health care is constantly advancing and evidence based practice creates change frequently. Being able to adapt and embrace change is essential to thriving in our career. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I feel like this course has had a lot of great messages! I have enjoyed the variety of the units discussed. I feel like this week was hard to have a reflection because there was not much material covered.

Week 15 Reflective Homework

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

This week I learned that risk management in healthcare has a few different aspects. It also has a few different steps in the process including risk identification, risk mitigation, and risk financing. I was most interested in the risk identification and risk mitigation because I feel like it is easier for me to participate/understand these aspects of risk management with my current role and experience. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

The team discussion this week proposed a very interesting but unfortunate situation. It provided all of us with an opportunity to identify what potential risks may have lead to the event and what mitigation could/should have taken place that could have prevented such an event. However, out of my group members I feel like I was the most convinced that this nurse provided adequate patient care and that this would have held up in a court of law. Sure, there were things that could probably have gone better. However, with such unfortunate circumstances, I think this nurse probably still would have been okay in the long run. 

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

As I am working, I will try to identify protocol/practices that could fuel unwanted risks. I can work to communicate with members of leadership if there seems to be something that could potentially cause harm to myself, staff, or patients. I also think it is important to remember that adequate charting is SO important. I know nurses LOVE to complain about charting, but unfortunately it is the best evidence that we are doing our parts as nurses to communicate with others and to keep our patients safe. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I wish that legal action wasn’t such a threat to health care workers, although I do recognize that it is sometimes necessary. 

Reflective Journal Week 13/14???

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

I learned about motivating employees this week. I realized there are many strategies and methods to motivate individuals. The needs of employees will likely change over time. Being sensitive and aware of these changes will allow you to properly incentivize individuals. Every team of co-workers is different and each unit/department/company may face different setbacks. However, as a leader, it is essential that you are able to ensure good performance by boosting moral and providing incentive. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

The group discussion this week allowed for a lot of ideas to be shared. The common themes that continuously surfaced to improve moral were employee recognition, communication between leadership and staff, scheduling, and planning miscellaneous activities/meals! I think these are always areas that should be assessed or considered for possible improvements!

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

I can utilize this information in my nursing practice as I am a member of the engagement committee for my department. As part of the engagement committee, we are in charge of recognition, event planning for holidays and birthdays, and ensuring that each member of our staff knows that they are a valued member of our team! We have actually run into a problem of low moral in the past, and unfortunately, we were doing all of the things discussed in our group discussion this week already! I feel lucky to be part of the department I am in, because I personally think they already have a great handle on things like recognition, scheduling, and lots of perks/goodies. Unfortunately, there will always be times where moral runs low. We did find that avoiding certain staff combinations actually helped improve moral as well. There are a few staff members who always have negative feelings about things. If too many of them were scheduled for the same shifts, it seemed to magnify any dissatisfaction people were feeling! This was actually an easy fix. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I feel like it is important to be able to  identify ways to improve work ethic and attitude. Unfortunately, most nurses experience burnout at some point in their career. Talented leadership can help combat and overcome burnout!

Week 12 Reflective Journal

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

I learned a lot about conflict resolution. I learned about effective communication strategies during conflicts and the importance of being a good listener. I also learned a lot about collective bargaining. This was a new topic to me. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

I enjoyed the discussion about the difference between assertive and aggressive communication. I am a pretty passive person, and I avoid conflict as much as possible. I think for me, this discussion emphasized that it is okay to be assertive when it is necessary. I also thought the group exam provided very interesting ethical dilemmas to be discussed.  

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

I can utilize the information learned in my nursing practice by applying conflict resolution methods and strategies as conflicts arise at work. I can learn to be more assertive when there is a conflict. I believe in doing so, I can reduce the risk of coming off aggressive. If I hesitate to be assertive, I may let problems go on too long until I explode and become aggressive. I can also encourage others to handle their own conflicts in a professional and appropriate manner. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I feel like conflict resolution is an important and difficult part of leadership. As a manager or leader, I feel like you are faced with difficult conflicts. Many of which have been escalated to you because individuals have been unable to resolve these conflicts on their own. Understanding effective approaches to conflict resolution and being able to facilitate effective communication is a vital part of being a leader. 

Week 11 Reflective Journal

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

I thought strategic planning was an interesting topic to include in the leadership course. Initially, as we had discussions and assignments focusing on education systems, I was trying to figure out what strategic planning was all about and how it relates to leadership positions. After completing the course readings, I realized that strategic planning is essentially any well thought out approach of an organization working towards fulfilling their goal or mission. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

It was interesting to see what types of Masters degree programs my colleagues were interested in. I thought the discussion prompt actually offered a lot of insight into what considerations must be made for an organization to make a big investment in something such as a MSN program (clinical sites, programs in the state, etc.). I wish we had more time to plan or explore some of the activities for this week, because I feel like there were a lot of learning opportunities and considerations.

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

I think this unit offered a lot of insight into the careful planning that goes into the organizations I am a part of. Whether it is the hospital I work at or the school I attend, there are people hopefully working hard to implement strategic planning. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I feel like it is important to have this insight, even if it is limited, into the planning that is required of leaders.  

Reflective Journal Week 10

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

This unit taught me a lot about managing change for myself but also as a leader. I had never heard of Kotter’s eight steps to change, and I found this to be very interesting. I learned that successful leaders should put a lot of thought and planning into implementing change in order to make change as painless as possible. I learned that I have actually seen leadership use several of these steps in the past, I just never knew what design they were following. I also learned quite a bit about myself and my attitudes in regards to dealing with change. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

The group discussion this week was actually really interesting. I feel like many of us had the same general ideas. We were mostly Haws, although we may have been more like other characters at different points in our lives. We all recognize that change is something that is necessary to progress in life and to happy. Nothing good will come out of waiting around for things to return to the way they were before. However, I feel like each one of our team members also got their own message from this little video. One person mentioned the need to embrace change while still being a person that is reliable for loved ones. Another individual had some insightful comments about the writings on the wall. This made me realize that the message and the story is the same for all of us, but we may have different parts stand out depending on our own experiences or situations. 

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

One thing that was discussed in our group was the impact an individual’s attitude about change can have. Not only can attitude about change impact your own success and happiness, but it can also have a big impact on others around us. It sometimes feels like change is constant at work. I have seen co-workers get tired of change. People start to grumble and complain. They do not take action and embrace change, but rather sit like Hem and wait for someone to change their mind about a new policy, new charting expectations, etc. I think if individuals on a unit make a point to try to embrace change, it can actually drastically alter the way other people will view the changes. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I felt like this unit was a great opportunity to reflect on my own attitudes about change. I feel like everyone experiences change differently. Some individuals may seek change and others may reject or resent change. I think one of the best things we can do is to be honest with ourselves. I think it is important that I am able to recognize and reflect on my own experiences with change in order to navigate the cheese maze of life. 

Budget Interview

 

I interviewed Alex Breton who is the owner of Utah EMT Academy. He started his this program a few years ago. As a result, he has had to take several financial risks in the process of opening a successful school. It was interesting to hear about the expenses of someone purchasing medical supplies outside of a hospital setting. 
ur company goes over budget?

Education supplies. In order to develop skills, we have the need to purchase medical supplies, stretchers, CPR dummies, etc. Many of these products are expensive. Even things like bandages and IVs get expensive when paying for products in bulk out of pocket. 

2. What have you noticed works most effectively in cutting costs of these problem areas?

I try to reuse supplies when I can as long as it is safe. If bandages, gauze, slings, etc are just being used for practice many of these can be used multiple times. I try to give students a pack of supplies when class starts and I encourage them to keep this stuff in good condition so they can practice with it over and over. I also take very good care of CPR mannequins, IV arms, and supplies like that since they are expensive to replace. 

3. Have you ever had to lay people off as a result of consistently going over budget?

No.

4. Do you find it beneficial to keep employees aware of budgeting concerns?

Yes. I have a fairly small roster of employees, so all of them are pretty involved in most aspects of the school program. 

5. Are there certain categories of your budget that seem to be unpredictable? (patterns of being over then under budget?)

There have been a few big purchases that I have made the decision to spend money on. In general my expenses right now are fairly predictable. There is a price to pay for a growing program though. 

6. How often do you spend time looking over the budget?

At least once a week. I spend more time looking over the budget before a new class starts. 

7. Do you ever include staff or other leaders in budget discussions?

Yes. If I am trying to make a decision in regards to spending money on educational material, I value the input of my employees. We work as a group to decide what would be most beneficial for the students. 

8. Do you have any tools or programs you use to stay on budget?

I do have a budgeting program that I use to keep track of expenses and profit. 

9. What concerns you more, keeping the month to month budget or the year to date budget?

Right now, a month to month budget is more important to me. Because the school is only a couple years old, we are still going through a lot of growth and changes. As a result, the year to date budgets would be kind of inconsistent. In the future, as less change is occurring, I’m sure I will be more concerned with year to date budgets. 

10. What has been your greatest success in keeping budget? What is a time when you erred in keeping budget?

Starting a program like this is a big financial risk. I had to put a lot of money into opening my own EMT school. So far it has worked out okay for me, but there have been ups and downs financially as I got this business going. 

Week 9 Reflective Journal

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

I actually really enjoyed learning about and discussing different scheduling methods. Because I do not work on a typical nursing floor, it was interesting and insightful to learn more about scheduling for other units. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

The team activity in which we discussed which scheduling system was the best was very insightful! I do not always get a chance to discuss the pros and cons of scheduling strategies, so that was very educational! The team discussion in which we discussed our career goals made me realize something. A few of my team members have a 5 year plan lined out and know exactly what they want to do and how they need to get there. The majority of my team members are in a similar boat as me. Even though I am a year into my career, I feel like I am such a new nurse. I have so many experiences and opportunities ahead of me, that I am honestly having a hard time choosing and sticking to a career path for my future. I think the most important thing for many of us right now is to learn as much as we can and to remain open to new ideas, responsibilities, and experiences.

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

If I chose to stay in the unit I am currently working in, there is a pretty good chance I will accept a leadership position as soon as I finish my BSN. Part of this leadership position includes overseeing scheduling, so this unit provided some introductory information that may be useful to me in the future! If I chose to accept the shock-trauma ICU position, I will have a big change in schedule. It was nice to get some insight into other scheduling methods. It was also useful/stressful to think about my ultimate career goal as I attempt to make this decision. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

This week made me very grateful for the schedule and scheduling system that I have now. I realized so many units have consistent issues with employee schedules. I feel lucky to be part of a unit in which I have very few, if any, complaints about my schedule. 

Week 8 Reflection

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

I learned about the future of nursing. I learned that many of the plans for the future of nursing focus on creating a healthcare system that relies on highly trained and educated nurses to be involved with leadership and promoting nurses to working to their full scope of practice. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

I think most people in my team agrees that it is important to reach toward the goals for the future of nursing. We were all able to recognize ways in which these goals are relevant and being implemented. 

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

The material covered this week made me reflect on my own contribution to achieving the future of nursing. I realized my education is a fundamental piece of the future of nursing. I think it is important to recognize ways in which we can work toward becoming leaders at work. I also think nurses can strive toward becoming a valued member of the health team by practicing effective communication with doctors, physicians, etc. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I thought it was an interesting lecture to listen to. I personally think there are several big changes that could be made in order to really improve or change the future of nursing. I feel like there are big organizational changes to healthcare world that could allow nurses to be more involved in patient care and could also promote continuing education 

Week 7 Reflective Journal

1. What did you actually learned from the unit.

I learned the basics about budgeting. I also learned about internal and external time wasters as well as appropriate delegation. I learned time management and appropriate delegation can impact a department’s budget. I also learned that priority setting is the most critical skill in time management. 

2. Discuss your feelings/experiences from the team activities? Did it change your opinion on the subject? If so, how? If not, why?

I think the best thing about the team activity this week is it really depended on collaboration. Because most of us were not familiar with the budgeting spread sheet before this module, we needed to rely on each other to figure out potential solutions. 

3. How you will utilize the information learned in your nursing practice.

I will utilize the information covered this week by being aware of budgeting concerns in my own department. Budget is something that is discussed in our department meetings on a regular basis. I think being more involved or aware of budget goals or challenges can help me better understand budgeting for healthcare as a whole. I think it is important to understand the basics of budgeting so that we are able to contribute as employees. 

4. You personal feelings about the material covered.

I learned that budgeting is my worst nightmare. My dad is a Chief Financial Officer. His entire job is budgeting big companies. Growing up, I would listen to him work and think “I never want to do that”. I believe I could be very good at budgeting for a department if I had to. I just have no desire to ever have that responsibility. I also learned it is hard to budget for a department or company that you are not actively involved in the day-to-day operations. 

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